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EJN Awards Biodiversity Grants to 15 Journalists and Four Media Organizations from 13 Countries

cranes in Zambia

Everything from the air we breathe to the water we drink to the food we eat depends on healthy biodiverse ecosystems. Biodiversity sustains billions of livelihoods worldwide. It regulates the climate and serves as a buffer against natural disasters. But scientists warn we are losing the variety of life on our planet at a rapid clip (1 million species are under threat of extinction globally, according to the IPBES). 

As part of EJN’s effort to increase the quality and quantity of biodiversity coverage worldwide, we are supporting 15 journalists to produce stories that investigate new threats to global species diversity – and highlight solutions that are underway to conserve it.  

  1. Brian Ambani – Nation Media Group, Kenya 
  2. Emilio Godoy – Inter Press Service, Mexico 
  3. Francis Kajubi – The Guardian, Tanzania 
  4. Khalid Bencherif – AL3omk, Morocco 
  5. Nhung Nguyen Hong –, Vietnam 
  6. Nihar Gokhale – The Morning Context, India 
  7. Pratch Rujivanarom – Bangkok Post, Thailand 
  8. Rahul Singh – Mongabay India, India 
  9. Raihana Maqbool – The Kashmir Images, India 
  10. Rhick Lars Vladimer Albay – Eco-business, Philippines 
  11. Ricardo Hernández Ruiz – Pie de Pagina, Mexico 
  12. Sebastian Nicolás Zurita Montenegro – Periodismo de Investigacion, Ecuador 
  13. Sharmila Vaidyanathan – Nature inFocus, India 
  14. Tatenda Chitagu – The Standard, Zimbabwe 
  15. Varsha Singh – Down to Earth, India  

Through EJN’s Biodiversity Media Initiative (BMI), grantees will cover topics such as the threat of climate change to migratory birds in Kashmir, the effect of pollution on microbe reefs in Mexico, conflict between humans and the Irrawaddy Dolphins of the Philippines, and much more. Grantees will work closely with experienced EJN mentors to produce their stories, which will be published in local media outlets to increase their potential for impact.  

In addition, we are pleased to announce a second round of BMI grants has been awarded to four media organizations: 

  1. Eburnie Today, Cote d Ivoire 
  2. Causa Natura, Mexico 
  3. Together for Life, Albania 
  4. Society of Indonesian Science Journalists, Indonesia 

Over the next several months, these organizations’ projects will build the capacity of journalists to report on biodiversity and conservation issues through training and networking opportunities. In Cote d Ivoire, Eburnie Today will build the country’s first biodiversity media network for journalists, with the creation of an annual award given to the best champion of environmental conservation. In Mexico, Causa Natura will facilitate Mexico’s first journalist network for marine conservation. In Albania, Together for Life will build the capacities of local journalists to report on biodiversity and conservation issues. Finally, in Indonesia, the Society of Indonesian Science Journalists will pair early-career journalists with senior journalists and biodiversity scientists, and lead workshops to improve reporting on environmental issues in the region.  

“We are excited to welcome these journalists and media organizations into the BMI program, which is now in its second year,” said Charlie Debenham, EJN Program Coordinator. “It is particularly important to us to support work in regions where biodiversity issues are historically underrepresented in the media landscape, and we are proud to be supporting the creation of two new journalist networks in countries where they are most needed.” 

Read more about EJN’s Biodiversity media initiative, funded by Arcadia, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, here. Look out for these stories and future project updates from our BMI Media grantees on the EJN website.  

Banner image: Cranes in the African savannah, Zambia / Credit: Birger Strahl via Unsplash